Enabling Enterprise Project Portfolio Management with Packaged Integration to Primavera P6
By Mark Rosenberg on Apr 15, 2011
On March 10, 2011, we made packaged integration between the PeopleSoft Program Management 9.0 and Primavera P6 Enterprise Project Portfolio Management R8 applications available to customers. For several reasons, this achievement is particularly exciting to those of us responsible for "project management" and "project accounting" applications at Oracle. The primary reason is that the integration aims to address a perennial challenge faced by PeopleSoft Projects customers--aligning and orchestrating the work of project managers, program controllers, and executives in the project management office. Prior to today, customers either built their own integration between PeopleSoft and Primavera P6 (or other project management tools), traded manual spreadsheets, or developed home-grown project tracking and reporting databases. Now, with this packaged integration available in the PeopleSoft Program Management 9.0 application, customers can tighten process controls, easily re-configure business rules and data flows, scale processes, and remove administrative burden in their journey to better project alignment, effective project governance, and an integrated IT infrastructure.
Because uncontrolled, loose processes are the enemy of predictable results, one of the most compelling features of this new Primavera P6 integration is that it can be scheduled to synchronize both master data (i.e., labor, material, equipment, and resource rate information records in PeopleSoft) and project data on a regular schedule. This ability to configure when and how synchronization occurs not only enables your organization to very easily tighten control of processes and establish a cadence for the flow of information but also institutionalize project management practices that consistently result in success. For instance, you can make sure that your project progress (i.e., percent complete) in PeopleSoft is never more than a day old by setting the synchronization of activity data across all (or some subset) of your projects to occur every day at 4 pm.
When you are synchronizing your projects, you can choose which project data objects (e.g., project header, activities, resource assignments, etc.) to synchronize. The system looks at what is called the synchronization template for each project to determine whether to import or export each object's data. The screenshot below of the synchronization template shows you how checkbox and radiobutton options determine the direction in which data will flow. For each project, the synchronization template defaults from the business unit level, you can override the default template with a different one, and you can even modify the data flows or use different synchronization templates for a project at each phase of its life. Different parts of your business may need the ability to initiate, manage, and synchronize projects differently, and the synchronization template has been designed to give you this ability. With this level of business analyst-configurability and ease of administration, you should be able to say "good-bye" to "system rigidity".
As many of our PeopleSoft customers are large organizations with thousands of active projects at any point in time, we architected this integration with scalability in mind. When you look at the integration, you immediately notice that there are separate schedulable processes for synching (A) master data, (B) net new projects, and (C) existing projects. Furthermore, there are many criteria on the run control pages associated with each of these processes so that you can launch multiple instances of the same process, such as Synchronize Existing Projects, in parallel. Careful attention was paid to the design of these run controls to support partitioning of data for efficient processing and scalability. On top of this, we provide extensive error logging and audit tables so you can see exactly what has been synchronized and audit the data.
With this integration, you should also be able to cut the burden of paperwork, a major obstacle to effective project governance and visibility. Because changes to project-related dates, resource assignments, and project progress can automatically flow from Primavera P6 into PeopleSoft, and because commitments, actual costs, and hours worked can be transmitted to Primavera P6 from PeopleSoft, you should find that project managers can stop filling in spreadsheets for project accountants, and project accountants should not have to field as many calls from project managers seeking basic reports on project actuals and commitments.
Driving better project results requires accurate, timely information. With the increased access to information that this Primavera P6 integration can provide to your project managers and project financial management team, excuses for runaway projects, billing and accounting delays, and renegade behaviors become harder to justify. And, if you're lucky, your project managers and your project financial management staff just might admit that they can work together and make each other's jobs easier with this new integration.
For more information, check out this datasheet regarding the integration. Oracle customers can login to MyOracle Support and locate detailed integration documents and the actual integration patch by searching on the keywords PeopleSoft Program Management Primavera P6 integration.